Suggested crushed rock mine expansion threatens brand-new Salida bike path

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Mike Smith remembers a meeting with Bureau of Land Management officials in April 2019 as the agency reviewed plans for a new trail on Methodist Mountain in Salida. John Ary, the longtime owner of the Hard Rock Paving and Redi-Mix, Inc., was also at the table with Smith and his team from Salida Mountain Trails. Ary’s gravel mining company wanted to expand onto BLM land near the trail. 

“The Hard Rock guys said they were OK with the trail, even if they pursued expansion plans,” Smith said. “Now it looks like they have changed their minds after we constructed the trail.”

Salida’s downhill-friendly, 1.3-mile Solstice Trail, built in June 2019 with $50,000 in grant funding from the Colorado the Beautiful trails program, could be threatened by a proposed expansion of the Hard Rock mine. The BLM last month announced it was studying the proposal, which would expand the mine’s footprint onto 50 more acres of BLM land that includes the Solstice Trail. 

“We talked to them the whole time about expanding our boundaries so we could both operate in the same area and those conversations are not over,” Ary said in an interview with The Colorado Sun. “We wanted to expand our boundary and we learned about the bike trail and said ‘no problem,’ we can adjust our boundary and they had the same attitude. We have said that if the BLM and all parties concerned are in agreement to move the trail to a more scenic area, we would pay for moving it. We went and walked the actual bike trail that got built and it is not built where the mapping we were given indicates.”

The expansion study — still in its very early stages — comes as Nestle Waters North America seeks Chaffee County permission to renew its 10-year permit to pump 60 million gallons of water per year from the aquifer upstream of Salida, near Nathrop. A group of citizens has united to fight the permit renewal, arguing that not only is drought threatening water supplies in the valley, but the initial approval of Nestle’s permit in 2009 was flawed. 

“This is the wrong way to go for where we want to be,” said Tom Bomer, who co-founded the group Unbottle and Protect Chaffee County Water. 

And it comes as Salida and Buena Vista enjoy record-breaking visitation and sales tax revenue from a booming economy based in large part on outdoor recreation. 

The first round of public comment on the Hard Rock plan ended last week following a 20-day extension of the public scoping period requested by mountain bikers and homeowners on Methodist Mountain. Opponents of the expansion said people submitted thousands of comments asking the BLM to protect the trails and buffer homes near the aggregate mine. 

“We asked for a copy of the proposal and we asked for more maps of the expansion and we can’t get it. We are running a little bit blind here, but we have had about 7,000 letters opposing the expansion so far,” said Jerry Mallett, a longtime Salida local who is also president of the Methodist Mountain Homeowners Association, one of several homeowner groups uniting in opposition to the mine that has operated on the mountain for several decades. “We understood what they were doing when we moved here but we did not sign up for a 50-acre expansion onto public lands.”

A map of the proposed expansion provided by Salida Mountain Trails shows the proposed expansion of the Hard Rock gravel mine overlapping with the new Solstice Trail.

BLM officials are quick to note that the National Environmental Policy Act review process is in its early stages. As the BLM continues its review, alternatives will be outlined and then the public will get another chance to weigh in. 

“There will be a second comment period once different alternatives are identified,” said Suzanne Copping, the acting district manager of the BLM’s Rocky Mountain District. 

The exact proposal won’t be detailed until the Environmental Assessment advances past the scoping period, Copping said. The scoping period is the first step in what should be about a six-month process and a draft Environmental Assessment with detailed information and analysis should come in the next three-to-four months, she said. 

Hard Rock operates on 37 acres, which includes about 10 acres of BLM land. The BLM permitted access to the 10 acres in 2009. The gravel mine has operated in the area since the 1950s and John Ary bought the operation in the early 1980s. 

Hard Rock’s request, which is briefly noted in an Aug. 10 news release announcing the BLM’s review of the mine expansion, would expand the mine onto about 50 acres of BLM land. That would extend the life of the mine by about 38 years, providing access to 10,000 to 50,000 tons of gravel a year for producing asphalt and concrete.

“Access to the BLM reserves would help sustain supplies of aggregate to help meet future demands in Chaffee County and surrounding areas,” the BLM release reads, also noting that in 2018, mining of non-energy minerals on BLM land in Colorado generated about $194 million in economic activity and supported 650 jobs.

Ary said the expansion would not translate into increased activity or traffic at the mine, but it would add to the longevity of the operation. 

“The volume and the type of business is not going to change,” Ary said. 

The Decker Fire last year scorched 9,000 acre south of Salida, including swaths of Methodist Mountain. Salida residents have asked about the potential impacts of removing more trees from the mountain as the mine expands — specifically flooding issues for homes downhill of the mine and burn scar. They’re also concerned about truck traffic, air quality and wildlife impacts, Mallet said. 

The maps provided in the BLM release announcing the requested expansion showed the mine’s proposed new boundary overlapping the Solstice Trail. Salida Mountain Trails built Solstice as part of the group’s nearly 20-year plan to develop a network of trails for all levels of riders. 

Ten years ago, only one trail went through Methodist Mountain, but now there are more than 12 trails, all purpose-built and ranked for beginners to experts. Those trails, built by Salida Mountain Trails, were approved in a 2017 BLM Environmental Assessment that noted surging numbers of mountain bikers and “the largest demand in the Salida area is for more hiking and bicycling trails.”

“The following proposed trails would greatly expand and enhance the stacked-loop system and provide all-day or multi-day hiking and riding opportunities,” reads the BLM’s final review of the trail construction proposal.

“Solstice is one of our most popular trails over the course of the year,” said Smith, describing how the trail’s alternative options, with aggressive and tame lines, attracts a wide variety of mountain bikers.  

Gravel mines have a challenge when it comes to expanding operations on the Western Slope. A limestone aggregate mine above downtown Glenwood Springs is asking the BLM for a massive expansion, spurring fierce opposition and lawsuits. A gravel pit proposed on private land on a mesa above the Colorado River near Gypsum was rejected by local officials in 2016 after residents blasted the plan. (Gypsum officials did embrace a new gravel pit, near the Eagle County airport, in 2019 after local businesses lamented there was only one company selling aggregate materials in the county.)

Ary himself spent more than two years in litigation with Pueblo County commissioners and homeowners adjacent to a gravel pit he wanted to build on private land east of Pueblo. (Ary eventually secured a special-use permit for his Fremont Paving and Redi-Mix operation in 2019.)

But aggregate is a critical component for the infrastructure that supports the Western Slope’s growth. Ary said people who want to stop gravel pits from growing need to think of the impacts, pointing to a gravel miner in Fairplay who sends 40 trucks a day to downtown Denver for a single project. 

“Look, we live in these communities and we understand exactly what these communities are going through. We all want the growth and we all want the positive change and the recreation and the tourists, but with that comes growth and the need for wider roads,” Ary said. “At some point, somewhere, somehow you have got to have the materials to continue to develop. The irony is that nobody really wants to know where it’s coming from.”

Smith understands the need for concrete in the growing communities of the Western Slope. But he wonders about potentially removing trails to accommodate that need. 

“We know that recreation is a major economic driver and our trails have great support from businesses and our community here,” Smith said. “It’s a different world now in Salida than it was when they built the original gravel pit, with all the housing and recreation that is going on. It’s become a critical part of our economy.”

Copping said there was “general agreement” between the trail builders and the Hard Rock mine operator at past meetings. 

“Alternatives will be developed and analyzed during the EA process that consider the placement of existing trails, as well as other relevant issues brought forward during public scoping,” she said. 

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  • Proposed gravel mine expansion threatens new Salida bike trail
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Little plane accidents near Telluride killing both people aboard

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A small plane crashed Monday afternoon near the mountain town of Telluride, killing both people aboard.

The Federal Aviation Administration says the plane was a single-engine Beech S35 Bonanza. It crashed about 1 p.m.

“The FAA and National Transportation Safety Board will investigate,” said Allen Kenitzer, a spokesman for the FAA. “The NTSB will be in charge of the investigation and will determine the probable cause of the accident.”

Search and rescue teams gather to respond to a plane crash near Telluride on Monday, Oct. 5, 2020. (Provided by the San Miguel County Sheriff’s Office)

The San Miguel Sheriff’s Office said the crash happened in the area of Black Bear Pass, a treacherous, backcountry route between Telluride and the Million Dollar Highway.

Details, including where the plane took off from and where it was headed, were not immediately released.

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  • Small plane crashes near Telluride, killing both people aboard
  • Essay: What happened when Black Lives Matter arrived in Colorado’s deeply conservative Eastern Plains
  • Proposed gravel mine expansion threatens new Salida bike trail
  • Beyond Zoom: Virtual therapy’s next generation has Bluetooth pulse monitors and more
  • Proposition 116 explained: Colorado must decide whether an income tax cut is worth a hit to state budget

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10 Ways Beginning a New Life with a Clean Slate

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We, as humans, are full of flaws. No matter how we try, we tend to make mistakes. Doing something wrong or making a mistake is only natural. However, not learning from your mistakes and trying to do the right things after realizing that you were wrong is what makes us bad. Therefore, no matter what you have done in the past, it doesn’t matter if you strive to be a better person by undoing your wrongs. 

Trying to be a better person should be our way of living instead of being stuck in the past and let it haunt us for eternity. If you are reading this blog, then it means that you may have done some things that you regret now and want to start a new life where you try to be a better person and not repeat the pattern that you’ve been following. If you have made your mind to be someone who lives their life on basic principles of humanity, then you are already halfway through the right path.

In this blog, I am going to tell you how you can start your new life without letting your past haunt you. 

So, let’s dig in and find out the ways through which you can start a new life with a clean slate:

First thing First – Start Self-actualization

If you want to learn about your true self and want to know about your true and raw nature, then you have to give yourself some time. Take as much time you need to self-actualize but once you are done, make sure that you draw a positive conclusion. 

It doesn’t matter what kind of realizations you come across with yourself. You have to tell yourself that you are going to be a better person. You need to remember that you don’t have to blame yourself on everything that you have done, but it doesn’t mean that you start finding excuses for why you did what you did. It is going to make you fall in the trap of selfishness. And, remember you are trying to be a good person, and if you start thinking from a place where you used to be a selfish person, then you are simply fooling yourself.

Identify Your Patterns and Figure out What’s Wrong 

More often than not, we don’t realize when we are doing something wrong until it starts to have consequences. It doesn’t mean that we are doing it on purpose. It only means that we never really sit down and think about our actions and how they can affect others. However, if you want to change yourself for your own good, then it’s about time that works in figuring out your pattern. 

All you have to do is be on your own guard and think twice before you take any decision. If you are still unable to figure out why your behavior is not socially appropriate, then you can change your strategy of finding your pattern. 

For example, you can analyze your behavior when you are happy. Similarly, watch how to behave when you are sad or unhappy about anything. It’ll tell you a lot about yourself, and you’ll be able to figure out what you need to change. Remember, changing yourself and leaving your old pattern of behavior is not something that you can do overnight. Therefore, don’t try to rush into it. Gather all the patience you have and start the process of your growth one step at a time.

Take Baby Steps – Talk to People 

There is no denying the fact that unlearning is way more difficult than learning something new. Therefore, you have to remind yourself every step of the way that you are doing for a great purpose. Don’t forget to constantly remind yourself that you may have to fight your own beliefs and adopt new and better ones. 

It is going to be a long journey, and if you try to reach your destination by running towards it, then you’ll lose your breath halfway through it. Therefore, take baby steps and keep ongoing. This way, it may take a while before you start realizing that you are heading in the right direction, but rest assured, you’ll achieve what you strive for at the end of the day.

Submit Your Record Expunging Application 

If your past has some dark history like some criminal history, then it may be very difficult for you to move on as you’ll always think about the criminal record under your name. But what if I tell you that you can get your criminal record expunged from the record? Yes, you heard it right. 

If you truly want to be a new person with a complete change of heart, then the law will also have a soft corner for you. All you have to do is make sure that you prove it through your actions. It means that if you are serving your time in prison, then you have to show nothing but excellent behavior. Trust me when I say that your behavior is being noticed, and you get rewarded for it. 

So, if you want to expunge your criminal record from the database, then you have to file a simple application. However, you are going to need a good attorney by your side to guide you through the process. San Diego Expungement Attorney can help you in this regard as they have years of experience in their field.

Talk to Your Therapist – Be 100% Honest 

One of the most important things that you need to do is taking medical help. You may think that you have it under your control, but it is where you are wrong. You have to make sure that you tell nothing but the truth to your lawyer if you want to get better and achieve your ultimate goal of being a better person. 

A good therapist will help you by telling you the areas where you need to improve yourself. They will also guide you with the right path as they help you in dealing with your issues that you may have concealed for too long. Above all, it is extremely important for your mental health to take medical help throughout the process of changing yourself. 

Learn to Face Your Fears Without Reacting on Triggers 

We all have our fears and demons to deal with. But, it doesn’t mean that you make them an excuse and let them trigger us to be the person we don’t want to be anymore. So, learn to face your fears head-on. It will help you to keep yourself composed in difficult and provoking situations. 

No doubt that it is going to be difficult, but it’s something that you have to do if you want to get rid of your past and be a better person who cares and respects others and doesn’t violate any of their boundaries just because they are triggered by something.

Make Changes in Your Routine 

If you think that you separate your spiritual journey from your physical one, then you are wrong on so many levels. You need to make active changes in your life if you want to start with a clean slate. It means that you’ll have to say goodbye to your old unhealthy habits and start a new lifestyle that is good for your health. 

For example, start working out and eating healthy. If you have any kind of addiction, then start taking small steps to quit it and improve your quality of life.

Leave Toxic People Behind – Make New Friends 

It is perhaps the most important and the most difficult that you’ll have to do during the process of changing yourself for good and starting a new life with a clean slate. Identify the people around you who have a negative impact on you and leave them behind. 

Make new friends and surround yourself with positivity. It helps you from relapsing, and you end up relieved and happy. So, figure out the people who have been nothing but a bad influence on you. End all the toxic relationships in your life. If it’s meant to be, then you’ll find some good people in your new life again, and this time you’ll have the emotional capacity to see if they are right for you or not.

Adopt Healthy Coping Mechanism 

Understandably, all these things are not going to be easy to work on. However, developing a healthy coping mechanism, like reading good books, watching your favorite movies, or cooking your own meals, etc. can help you in dealing with stress and the pressure that you may have been enduring in your past life.

Practice, Practice, Practice – Forget Shortcuts 

Lastly, there is no shortcut to being a better person. You’ll just have to wait and watch till you are sure that you are not that person anymore. It requires a lot of patience and practice. So, keep practicing until it becomes natural, and there will come a day when you’ll realize that you have come a long way from the kind of person you used to be.

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Is your company advertising and marketing clever in the pandemic?

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Small and mid-sized businesses have been especially hard-hit by COVID-19. Without marketing experience, or a team of marketing professionals to help, many struggle day-to-day to keep their businesses running. The team at Target Rich Solutions has put together a Pandemic Marketing Assessment that lays out marketing strategies that act as a springboard to help businesses quickly get back to work.



The assessment provides go-to-market recommendations and a full digital media platform that includes search engine optimization, pay-per-click strategies, analytics and more. Step by step instructions for activating the digital media platform and recommendations for website improvement, digital content optimization and product/service delivery make it easy for business owners to fuel their business growth immediately.

David Sparks, the General Manager at Target Rich Solutions, and his team of seasoned marketing pros, created this assessment to help friends and family who needed some help getting back to business. The results people achieved were remarkable and the Target Rich Solutions team decided to offer this fast-start marketing plan to trade groups and any small and mid-sized businesses that needed help getting revenue flowing again at a fraction of what it would normally cost.

“Everyone is struggling in a volatile, uncertain, unprecedented business climate,” explained Sparks. “We know we can help businesses recover from the impact of the pandemic by creating custom-crafted plans built to respond to changing demand, increased competition and a marketplace that is in flux.”

Sparks and his team can help businesses rethink how they go to market and how technology supports it. To address today’s digitally driven consumer, even small firms have to think digital and the role of mobile. People can check out the Pandemic Marketing Assessment here:

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The Value of Expert Licenses What occurs if You Don’t have it?

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If you are a professional of any kind and affiliated with any organization or want to do your own business, then you have to make sure that you are complying with all the rules and regulations that imply your profession. Laws and regulations are made to make it easy and clean for you to do your business so that you can avoid all kinds of trouble just by following the laws and regulations.

You may have seen that people have amazing skills in their profession, but they still are not able to cut it in the competitive market out there. In contrast, there could be many reasons for this to happen; the most common reason that they don’t follow the law. 

Therefore, you must know that if the law demands you to have the license for your job, then you should not take it lightly. Getting your professional license is not just important to comply with the law. It is also important to get the benefits that come with getting the license. 

However, you have to make sure that you are getting your license through a proper legal channel so that you can avoid all the legal ones once in for all. California licensing defense can help you in this regard. 

Now that you know why it is important to have your professional license let’s talk about the benefits that you can have just by getting the license for your business regardless of the nature of your profession.

Makes Your Business Legit 

When it comes to your business, your ultimate priority is to make sure that you compete with your competitors and make enough money by providing excellent service to your clients. If you have a vision for your business, then you may want to expand it and wish to reach on the top of the pyramid. If you have such dreams for your business, then you have to make sure that you don’t make any mistake that can ruin the future of your business and do everything that guarantees success for your business. 

Getting your professional license for your business may not sound like a big deal, but it is extremely important if you want to make sure that you achieve the goals that you have for your business and see your vision come to reality. Your professional license can play a significant role in making your business legit. This credibility is just the thing that you need if you want to make sure that your business has the kind of credibility that you need to beat your competitors.

Your License Broadens Your Opportunities 

Business is all about opportunities. In today’s world, there are plenty of opportunities for you. However, if you think that these opportunities will present themselves in a dish, then you are mistaken. You have to hunt them practically and make sure that you get to it before your competitors do. 

However, if you don’t have a license for your business or profession, then your potential client will never give preference to you to do business. So, it is safe to say that you can enhance your chances of landing on the big opportunities for your business just by getting a professional license. Imagine your client asking you about your license, and you have nothing to show them. Sounds pretty horrible for business, right?

It Helps to Build Your Credibility 

In today’s world, business credibility is required to get the desired results out of your business. The importance of making your business credible is increased because there are a lot of scammers out there, and your clients are annoyed with them and are being scammed. It is the reason that the clients are willing to pay more when they are sure that the brand they are doing business with is 100% legit. 

Can you guess what makes you and the scammers different? It’s your license. Therefore, the importance of getting a license increases by many folds when you don’t only have to outstand your competitors, but you also have the burden to differentiate yourself from the scammers out there. 

It Reduces Most of Your Liabilities 

The world of business is unpredictable. There are many things that can go wrong. The possibility of things to go sideways increases when your business involves employee safety risk. Therefore, it is important that you do everything that it requires to reduce your liabilities. You have to make sure that if anything goes wrong, you are not the one to be blamed in legal terms. 

Getting a professional license can help you in reducing your liabilities. Your license is basically proof that you are eligible to do the business that you are doing; the state has no problem with it. So, when you have your professional license, and something goes wrong, it serves as proof that you are capable of carrying out everything in a safe manner, and whatever happened is a result of an accident, and there was nothing on your part. 

Helps to Expand Your Business

I’ve already mentioned the importance of having a vision of expansion for your business. If you think that expanding your business is a choice in fierce competition, then you are wrong. You have to expand and constantly evolve if you want to ensure the success of your business. 

Getting your professional license is going to help you here as well. When you are able to build a reputation of your business by keeping everything clean at your end, then it becomes easy for you to do business in other cities and states for that matter. It becomes easy because you carry a reputation of complying with the law with you wherever you go to do the business. Therefore, you don’t have to face many restrictions from the state.

All of these things tell you the benefits of having a professional license for your business. But, the real question is, what happens if you fail to comply with these restrictions? 

Here’s what you need to know about what happens if you don’t have a legit professional license for your business:

You could be in Legal Trouble 

The first and the most troublesome thing that’ll happen is that your business or your professional practice will be declared illegal. It means that everything that you are doing, all the services that you have been offering, or even the business you are running will be considered illegal. 

Put simply, you are not complying with the laws and regulations of the state, and it can put you in a great deal of legal trouble any second of the day.

Anything That Goes Wrong is on you

There is no denying the fact that you are operating illegally if you don’t have a license for your business. However, you must know that things could be even worse for you if something goes wrong in your professional practice or even in your business. 

It’ll not matter if you were involved in the incident or not, if you are operating the business without the license, then the incident will be on you, and you’ll be held accountable for it.

You May Get Sued by Your Clients 

Everything is going alright. You think that you don’t need the license as there is nothing that can possibly go wrong. But wait. What if your clients find out that you are operating illegally because you don’t have any license? That could be a real tough cookie to handle. 

Your clients can sue you simply for not having a license. Getting out of such suits and then building your business reputation again from scratch is not an easy thing to do. There is a big chance that you may end up losing your business altogether if you lose the case. So, as long as you don’t want it to happen, make sure that you are complying with the law and have your professional license. 

Everything will go Against You 

You already know that the market is competitive, and you have to go the extra mile to make sure that you stay ahead in the game. But, make no mistake because your competitor has the same mindset, and that’s what makes it all so difficult and critical. 

Your competitor can use it against you that you don’t have a professional license. It’ll give them an edge over you, and they’ll have all the reasons to drag the name of your business through the mud. So, if you don’t want anything like that to happen, you must get your license now.

You’ll Need Legal Assistance 

Getting a professional license can become a little too difficult if you don’t have any legal assistance with you. Therefore, it is essential for you to hire a lawyer who can help you in getting the license without any trouble. 

Lastly, you need to remember that you have to keep your end clean no matter what if you want to stand out among the rest of the professionals in your field.

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How Efficient is Hiring a Specialist Bad Guy Attorney?

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Getting accused of a crime that you didn’t even commit can be a very disturbing situation. This travesty of justice is a very scary and intimidating experience for an innocent, and removing false accusations is not that easy as it sounds. The world is full of clever people, and they can come with fake real-looking proofs against you, which could lead you behind bars or pay heavy penalties for a crime that you didn’t even commit. You can’t expect yourself to take charge of yourself alone as dealing with criminal laws isn’t a piece of cake. The laws keep on changing, and a single mistake in filling the documents or providing the wrong evidence can totally blow off your case. With that being in mind, it is crucial for you to hire a criminal defense attorney to fight your case.

There could be as many as thousands of situations in which you might need a criminal attorney by your side. Having professionals who have a deep knowledge of criminal law is an essential thing as they’ll guide you in every step of your process. If you or someone you know has been accused of a crime that you didn’t commit, and you have been made to face serious criminal charges, it’s about time that you stand up for your rights and hire a criminal lawyer. The Los Angeles Criminal Lawyer has got your back and will go the extra mile for you to make sure that justice is served.

The following are some situations where hiring a criminal lawyer becomes a need. 

Assault and Battery Charges

Assault and battery charges can vary when it comes to defense and all the possible outcomes. If someone has pressed battery and assault charges against you, there is an urgent need to hire the criminal lawyer as soon as possible because you can’t fight the case alone. The professional lawyer will come up with brilliant defense strategies to take off the charges from you. The following are some defenses that your lawyer could be coming up with to ensure that you stay secured. 


This is the most common defense strategy that most of the lawyers go for to stand against battery charges. The professional will make the jury approach the situation through a different dimension by proving that you were being faced by a threat, and you had to act back for your self-defense. 

Voluntary Consent

This is another strategy used by lawyers. Voluntary consent when it comes to defense for battery and assault charges means that the other party agreed to take part in a particular act that involved violence and later can’t just turn their backs towards you and press assault charges against you. 

Defense of Others

This strategy is almost the same as self-defense. The only difference is that you had the fear that someone else could have been harmed by a third party, and you acted for their defense. 

Defense of Property

A good lawyer will be able to make use of this strategy by showing that whatever you did was to defend your property. They’ll tell the jury that the other party tried to invade your property, and you had no choice but to fight back. 

Fraud or Financial Crimes

These types of crimes involve deceit. If a person abuses trust and commits a financial crime like debit card fraud or forgery, then they’ll be held accountable for financial crime. If you are someone who has been charged for such a crime, then hire a professional criminal attorney that especially specializes in white-collar crimes. 

Drug Charges

The usage of many drugs is not considered legal, and any practice that involves their cultivation, selling, and procession can pose serious consequences for you to deal with. Even if you have any items that are used in making a certain drug, charges could be pressed against you, resulting in heavy penalties. A professional crime lawyer will aid you in dealing with the charges and cleaning up the mess. 

Theft Charges

Theft is the most common crime committed by people. If you have committed this crime to permanently deprive someone of their belongings, theft charges could be pressed against you, and can even end up with you going behind bars. A criminal lawyer will help you by using different strategies to deal with the situation. For instance, they’ll show that you had the right over that belonging or you were drunk. They might also come up with showing that the stolen belonging was returned. 

The situations where you need help from a professional criminal attorney are countless, and the list goes on. Hiring these lawyers in such tough situations is a worthwhile investment to make. They know how to act in different case scenarios and will try their level best to save you from any criminal charges pressed against you. 

The advantages of hiring a criminal attorney to help you in all the legal matters can’t be underestimated. They provide you with an insight into the law and the whole criminal process. The following are some advantages of hiring a professional criminal attorney to support your case. 

Fast Process

The main purpose of a criminal attorney is to clear your name and help in regaining your former repute. With that in mind, they’ll make sure that the whole process goes faster. These lawyers have vast experience in this field, and they know how the paperwork goes. They’ll make sure that all the documents are filed correctly to avoid any delays in the process. 

They have all the Legal Knowledge

In case you are planning to fight for the case alone, there is a 90% chance that it will be blown away. You can’t handle even a single thing all alone, as there is a significant chance that the other party has a professional attorney by its side to act against you. You definitely need to hire a criminal lawyer because they have all the legal knowledge that is required to fight back. Their vast experience spread over the years makes them professionally strong and handle your case in a proper way. 

Protection from Heavy Penalties

It often happens that many innocents are accused of crimes that they didn’t even commit. Imagine getting accused of such a crime and having to pay a heavy penalty fee. Wouldn’t that be a total misery? A criminal attorney will use its experience to shield you from all the heavy penalties which you may be asked to pay. They can also help to lessen the punishment for a crime. 

The Lawyers are Always Updated 

It is a matter of fact that laws aren’t carved on a piece of stone. They keep on changing every day. It might be possible that you approach the court by keeping in mind a certain law, and when reaching there, you come to know that the law has changed. It leaves you unprepared as you are now made to face a different law. A professional attorney keeps itself updated by all the laws, and any new law that comes in the way will be immediately reported to you. 

They Know the Tactics and Strategies to Navigate Legal System

Winning becomes much easier when you know who you are going to deal with. Having a strong understanding of all the present participants in the battlefield will increase the chances of winning the case. In case you are planning to go and present your case all alone by yourself, you are likely to find yourself all gathered by strong prosecutors who will leave no chance to put you down. The prosecutor will see you as an easy target because there’s no one in their competition to represent you. Hiring a professional attorney is going to be extremely beneficial for you in such a situation. They know how to interact with the judge and the prosecutors in the right way. They are also aware of the arguments that work the best. 

They Have the Right Resources

All the reputed and well-known attorneys have the links and resources to handle your case in an effective way. Dealing with the case is not all about being present in the court. There is a lot more to it. You will have to gather proofs, evidence and look for any potential witnesses, etc. The lawyers have links with top-notch detectives and many other professionals who will help you in gathering all the proofs and evidence properly. 

Will Help You in Getting the Medical Attention

If you have been involved in a crime as a result of which you have sustained injuries, the professional lawyers will make sure that you get all the medical attention until the case is resolved. Meanwhile, they’ll be working on your case, and you can peacefully focus on your recovery. 

By keeping in view the above-mentioned benefits of hiring a professional attorney, you make sure that everything is handled professionally, and there is a high chance of winning the case. 

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9 Points You Need to Know Prior To Filing a Harassment Suit

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We are living in the 21st century, and unfortunately, the world is still not a safe place for certain genders and races. The discrimination based on gender, color, ethnicity, etc. is real, and no matter how beautifully one may sugarcoat the issues, it is still as ugly as it gets. 

The only hope is the women and minorities who are suppressed who keep fighting for their rights and keep making this world a little bit better one step at a time. It is the result of the struggle of women that now almost all the companies, big or small, have a clear and defined harassment policy, and they take such matters very seriously. 

However, there are still a lot of legal and technical amendments that need to be done in the USA to make the harassment and sexual abuse laws rock solid so that it becomes impossible for the culprit to get away with the law. But still, if you have been sexually harassed in your workplace or if you have faced any kind of harassment at your workplace by any of your colleagues, then you have to speak up against it. 

Understandably, it takes a lot of energy and courage to call out your harasser. It can take a severe toll on your mental health and can sometimes double the trauma. But, you need to understand that your silence is going to enable the harasser even more, and they’ll keep exploiting their position, and the number of their victims will keep rising. 

Don’t worry; you don’t have to fight alone. A good lawyer by your side will make it easy for you to go through the whole process. Above all, if you are choosing a lawyer who understands the intensity of the problem and keeps the issue close to their heart, then it means that you’ll have a constant support group by your side. So, hire a good lawyer like California Sexual Harassment Lawyer and break your silence and get the culprit behind the bars where they belong. 

If you have made your mind to file a sexual harassment lawsuit, then you must know some very important things before you actually began your fight. I’ve narrowed down some of the very important things that you need to know before you file a harassment lawsuit. 

Without any further ado, here they are:

Document Everything 

If you have been harassed at your workplace, then you must know that saying that someone harassed you is never going to be enough. You’ll be required to provide evidence of it. Now, absurd as it is, the truth is that you’ll be required to provide substantial evidence of being harassed. So, as soon as you feel that someone harassed you or made a move on you, which made you feel uncomfortable, lift your guard up. 

After that, put all your focus on collecting enough evidence that’ll back your claim in the court. For this, you may have to show extreme patience. I understand that it is heart-wrenching to see your abuser every day, but if you want to put them to a place where they actually belong, then you have to work on documenting the incident.

Read and Understand the Harassment Policy of Your Company 

If you have a harassment suit to file against the company you are working with, then it is very important that you read the harassment policy of your company and make sure that you are following all the SOP’s mentioned in the policy. It is very critical to comply with the company’s policy if you want to win your case in the court and want something more than just your abuser getting fired. 

If your company fails to investigate the case transparently and start to protect the abuser, then you can file a case both against the company and the particular individual. But again, for this, you’ll have to comply with the policy of the company.

Discuss With Your Attorney 

After you have made your mind to expose your abuser, it’s time to make sure that you hire an attorney who is not only good at their work but is also compassionate. Remember, your attorney is the only one who is going to be by your side throughout your struggle. Therefore, you have to be 100% honest with them. 

You’ll need to tell your attorney everything about the incident, and if you think you have some other information that can help your case, then you need to share it with them. Therefore, when you are out there searching for the attorney for your case, make sure that you hire a really good one because your win is going to depend on it.

 Prepared to be disbelieved

Believe it or not, but as soon as you come out and confront your abuser, it is more likely that you’ll be disbelieved. It is the most sickening part of the whole thing, but you have to stay strong. Most of these people who will be questioning your claim are rape and abuse apologists, and you really don’t have to care much about them.

You’ll be surprised to know that the chances are that even your friends and family may question you about your claims. It happens mostly when the abuser is extremely smart (which they mostly are) and has created an aura of an extremely honest and gentleman. But, don’t worry. Their avatar is not going to help them in the court. They’ll have to face the consequences of their heinous acts. 

You May Lose Your Job 

As much absurd and stupid it is, the reality is that you may end up losing your job even after you win your case. It mostly happens when your lawsuit involves the reputation of the company. In such cases, even after winning your case, you may have to leave the place because the environment is made toxic and extremely uncomfortable for you. 

So, you have to be prepared to lose your job in your journey of exposing your abuser. It is going to be a tough and hard decision, but at the same time, it is the right thing to do. Therefore, don’t sit in silence and bear more abuse just because there is a chance that you may end up losing your job.

Think Twice Before you take a Settlement 

When your case is finally in the court, then the real play begins. The other party will use all the tricks in the book to intimidate you in order to save their reputation. When all their tactics fail, they’ll come up with a settlement offer that is very enticing. It is exactly where you have to be extremely careful and make sure that you are doing the right thing.

It is understandable if you just want it all to end because you have lost all your energy in the process, but still, you need to think twice. Talk to your lawyer and ask them to show you a realistic picture of the case so that you can make the decision that is better for you. No matter what you opt to do, make sure that you are not hurting the cause.

Find and Team up with Other Victims 

More often than not, the abuser has a pattern of abuse. If you want to increase the chances of your win, then it is extremely important to find the other victims of the abuser and team up with them. If you can get them in the witness stand, then it means that you are already halfway through to get justice. 

Above all, this way, you’ll not be the only one getting justice. But, all the victims of the abuser will finally get closure and peace of mind. So, talk to your lawyer and see what you have to do to get the other victims to give a statement against the abuser.

You’ll be attacked both in and out of the court 

If you are filing a sexual harassment suit, then make no mistake that your abuser will play dirty. They may shoot below the belt blows and may counter accuse you of invalidating your claim. They may play the victim blaming card.

However, no matter what they do, you have to stand your ground and be prepared for the filth that they have in their mind. 

Don’t Give Up- You Got This 

This journey is going to be hard. You may end up losing all your energy and mental health and just want to give up. But, that’s where you need to tell yourself that this fight is bigger than you, and by investing yourself in your case, you are playing your part in making the world a better place.

So, don’t give up. You got this. The time is not far when both women and men will get the justice more swiftly, and they’ll not have to go through the trauma as their abuser will not be able to get away with their acts.

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Coronavirus transmission slow amongst more youthful Coloradans however health officials fret about rising hospitalizations

Colorado News

Coronavirus transmission among younger Coloradans has slowed in the past week, but state health officials are now worried about spread of the disease among older people as the number of hospitalizations grows to its highest level since late July.

The number of people hospitalized because of COVID-19 has jumped from 148 to 246 in Colorado in the span of about two weeks.


The latest from the coronavirus outbreak in Colorado:

  • MAP: Known cases in Colorado.
  • TESTING: Here’s where to find a community testing site. The state is now encouraging anyone with symptoms to get tested.
  • STORY: Coronavirus transmission slows among younger Coloradans, but health officials worry about rising hospitalizations


Dr. Rachel Herlihy, the state’s top epidemiologist, said on Tuesday that there was a 45% decrease last week in new cases among people 18 to 25 years old. She called that “substantial progress” as outbreaks at the University of Colorado Boulder and other college campuses have slowed.

But for all other Coloradans, there was a 1% increase in cases, which is what she attributed to the rising hospitalizations.

Herlihy warned that if the case-growth and hospitalization trends continue, there could be hospital capacity problems in the month or two. That would be right around the Thanksgiving and holiday seasons, when officials were already expecting rising case loads because of decreased social distancing.

“Disease levels in the next couple of weeks will really set us up for success or some challenges,” she said.

Gov. Jared Polis, speaking to reporters during a virtual briefing, urged Coloradans to remain vigilant and not let down their guard. He also pleaded with people to get tested if they have respiratory issues they think may be from wildfire smoke and not COVID-19.

“Even if you think it is the poor air quality, please get tested because it could also be the early symptoms of COVID,” Polis said. “Please, be sure. Get tested. Be safe.”

Gov. Jared Polis speaks to reporters at the governor’s mansion in downtown Denver on Tuesday, Aug. 20, 2020. (Jesse Paul, The Colorado Sun)

Meanwhile, on the national stage, President Donald Trump said Tuesday that he has instructed aides to stop negotiating on another round of congressional COVID-19 relief until after the election.

Trump tweeted that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was “not negotiating in good faith” and said he’s asked Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell to direct all his focus before the election into confirming his U.S. Supreme Court nominee, Amy Coney Barrett.

“I have instructed my representatives to stop negotiating until after the election when, immediately after I win, we will pass a major Stimulus Bill that focuses on hardworking Americans and Small Business,” Trump tweeted.

Last week, the White House said it was backing a $400 per week pandemic jobless benefit and dangled the possibility of a COVID-19 relief bill of $1.6 trillion. But that offer was rejected by Pelosi.

Trump broke off talks after Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell warned earlier Tuesday that the economic recovery remains fragile seven months into coronavirus pandemic without further economic stimulus.

Stocks dropped suddenly on Wall Street after Trump ordered a stop to negotiations.

The Dow Jones Industrial Average swung instantly from a gain of about 200 points to a loss of about 300 points.

Powell, in remarks before the National Association for Business Economics, made clear that too little support “would lead to a weak recovery, creating unnecessary hardship for households and businesses.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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Your thoughts on truth-telling and also bias “Be the beacon that allows us see through the haze.”

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Denver Post building the morning after the May 29, 2020 racial justice protest in downtown Denver.” style=”float: left;margin-right:25px;”>

Dear reader,

Wow. We asked for your thoughts last week on the test the Trump administration has posed to journalists seeking to be “objective” while adhering to the obligation to tell the truth.

Where, I asked, do you, readers and watchers and listeners of news, draw a line between truth-telling and a perceived agenda in news coverage, between holding power to account and bias? What do you see in coverage of the current administration that dismays you? Where have journalists utterly failed or risen to the occasion?

You answered — in droves. Here are some of the responses:

“We all, including all careers, have a responsibility to speak the truth. This country now sits in a place where it is not okay to sit on the fence and be neutral. If one isn’t working for resolution and change for the good then they are also part of the problem. Truth seekers appreciate the raw truth. … Lies stand when the truth is silent.” — Michael Quintana

“Your not a journalist. Your an activist. Your the problem.” — Donald Mitrani

“Unfortunately, the diseases of false equivalency and bothsideism are everywhere, and they could easily contribute to the election of Trump again if our journalists are not careful.” — Cynthia Kemper

“The truth is always non-partisan. Calling out lies is the mission of journalism. Do that.” — Tustin Amole

“The whole point of journalism is to make public something, or a series of somethings, that someone in a position of responsibility would like to keep unknown to the public. That is precisely what Trump and his sycophants don’t like. Speak up, Susan.” — Ray Schoch

“I’m suddenly recalling that AIDS-era sticker: Silence = Death. Blind obedience to professional mores in the face of an epic crisis fracturing the very foundations of our society, with basic rights and human lives at stake from so many assaults? What could possibly justify this?” — Carah Aviva Wertheimer

“He makes outrageous statements, the press covers them, he gets free publicity. That’s how he “financed” his entire 2016 campaign. You all spent your time on the presumptive winner and let him fly under the radar. Every time he made an outrageous claim, YOU repeated it for him, for free. You’re still doing that. Stop.” — Gene Jacobson

“Your letter was one of the most laughable things you have ever written. You are shocked that President Trump is upset about the treatment he has received from the supposed press for the entire 4 years of his presidency! I have a friend that just posted on Facebook the definition of confirmation bias. 

‘Confirmation bias is the tendency to search for, interpret, favor, and recall information in a way that confirms or supports one’s prior beliefs or values. It is an important type of cognitive bias that has a significant effect on the proper functioning of society by distorting evidence-based decision-making.’

“I think you are suffering from the above because you are oblivious to the most horrendous excuse for Journalism in this country I have ever seen. CNN is totally fake (well-deserved coined by President Trump) news and is the largest race war baiting station I have ever seen. MSNBC is right in there with them. There are very few unbiased news programs. Fox news tends to go the other direction and yet they are more honorable than the lies that spew from these agenda driven supposed news stations.” — Cindy Adams

“By objectively calling out injustice, inequity, dishonesty, deceit, fraud, prejudice, fraud, (the list goes on) you obviate the need to express your own bias.” — Susan Lasswell

“Be the beacon that lets us see through the fog!” — Eugene Delay

We’re in a time like no other, a time that calls for courage and clarity and reflection about who we are as journalists and as Americans. I want to leave you with a link to a recent Jay Rosen piece. Rosen, an NYU professor, has been beating the drum against bothsidesism and the state of political journalism for years now. This is his prescription for journalists in our time:

“Recently someone else asked me for three or four changes in political journalism that might begin to right this ship. (Emphasis on begin to…) To wind this up, here is what I told him:

  • Defense of democracy seen as basic to the job.
  • Symmetrical accounts of asymmetrical realities seen as malpractice.
  • “Politics as strategic game” frame seen as low quality, downmarket, amateurish, silly— and overmatched.
  • Bad actors with a history of misinforming the public seen as unsuitable sources and unwelcome guests.”

Thank you all for weighing in. Thank you for caring as much as you do — about journalism, about democracy, and about each other.

A version of this post originally appeared in a letter to readers on Friday, October 2. Get our newsletter delivered straight to your email box by signing up here.

Support our work with COLab here.

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COVID situation shuts down Clear Court

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A Deputy District Attorney working in the Clear Creek County Courthouse has tested positive for COVID-19 and was quarantined beginning Monday, Oct. 5, 2020. As a result, Chief Judge Mark Thompson, in collaboration with Clear Creek County Department of Public Health, has decided to limit court operations to essential functions until Wednesday, Oct. 14, 2020.

The Deputy District Attorney worked a criminal docket on Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2020, in Clear Creek County Court. After notifying Clear Creek County Department of Public Health Deputy Medical Director Tim Ryan about the exposure, the Court was instructed to notify all individuals in the courtroom where the Deputy District Attorney was present to quarantine for 14 days from Sept. 29, 2020.

“We are working closely with the Department of Health and District Attorney’s Office to gather additional information and to make these contact tracing notifications,” Chief Judge Mark Thompson said. “To do so most effectively, and in the interest of public safety, all jury trials and most other in-person hearings are now postponed until further notice.”

Anyone who appeared on Sept. 29, 2020, is asked to email the Clerk of Court at or call 303-569-0820 for more information and to assist with contact tracing.

If you are scheduled to be in court before Oct. 14, 2020, please contact your attorney if you’re represented, or leave a message with the Clerk of Court’s Office. Please include a phone number or email address for a new court date.

Photo by Jeffrey Beall

Photo by Jeffrey Beall

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